FSC Mauritius Reminds its Licensees of AML/CTF Obligations

Given the large number of brokers operating from Mauritius, the country's financial ‎watchdog warns against transactions ‎with sanctioned groups .

On Wednesday the Financial Services Commission (FSC) in Mauritius issued a ‎notice to remind its regulated entities that they are required to report suspicious or potentially ‎suspicious activity of the individuals or entities named in the Sanctions List set up by UNSC. ‎

The FSC announcement is a fairly routine occurrence among financial regulators ‎worldwide to adhere to international initiatives to combat money laundering and ‎financing of terrorism. And it often demands that the licensees regularly verify whether they ‎maintain any account or otherwise hold any fund, other financial assets, economic ‎benefits and economic resources for the named individuals, entities and specified groups.‎

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The circular letter listed the following names; any link with any of these should ‎be immediately reported to the FSC.‎

– ISIL (Da’esh) & Al-Qaida Sanctions List ‎‎‎

– ‎1718 Sanctions List- Democratic People’s Republic of Korea ‎‎

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– ‎1988 Sanctions List

The sanctions lists mentioned above are regularly updated and can be consulted on the ‎website of the United Nations.

FSC Mauritius made headlines last year after it revoked the licences of forex ‎broker FXPrimus. The regulator decision was made after it found FxPrimus in ‎breach of specific provisions provided under the Financial Services Act, as well as the ‎requirements of prevention of money laundering and terrorist financing, which highlights ‎the importance of today’s update.‎

Mauritius was for a long time a preferred destination for those interested in operating an offshore forex broker due to the softer financial requirements, which make it a better option than many European jurisdictions.‎

‎The benefits list includes limited set up costs, low capital requirements of about €17,000, and ‎a favorable tax regime. But recently it has become increasingly difficult to apply and obtain a forex licence in Mauritius to the point that most providers have changed their destination to Belize, despite the higher capital requirements and the more expensive fees structure.‎

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